That Frugal Thing You Do

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
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aj76er
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by aj76er »

1. Buy oatmeal in bulk and make it for breakfast most days
2. Pack a lunch for work every day
3. Learned to cook some basic dishes and make dinner at home every week day
4. Own a Prius
5. Use Google FI for mobile plan
6. Get most clothes at thrift stores
7. Do my own taxes (started this year!)
8. Live in a small, affordable condo; but in a good location that I can walk to to everything I need (grocery stores, thrift stores, library, bars, restaurants, etc..)
9. Get books and movies from library
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aerosurfer
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by aerosurfer »

When we know we can use a gift card somewhere... Amazon, eating out, Upcoming Disney trip, we buy gift cards at Kroger. 2-5% cash back on the CC, plus 2-4x fuel points.... We try to plan out fuel purchases to also hit the 35 gallon max between 2 of our cars too when we max out fuel points....

$250 Amazon card x 5% back
Plus 4 times fuel points = $1.00off/gallon
35 gallons plus 3% saving on fuel....

12.50+35+ (3% of the cost of gas, just over $2 usually)= about $50 savings for fuel I needed and whatever I was going to buy
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dm200
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by dm200 »

aj76er wrote: Sat May 12, 2018 1:32 am 1. Buy oatmeal in bulk and make it for breakfast most days
2. Pack a lunch for work every day
3. Learned to cook some basic dishes and make dinner at home every week day
4. Own a Prius
5. Use Google FI for mobile plan
6. Get most clothes at thrift stores
7. Do my own taxes (started this year!)
8. Live in a small, affordable condo; but in a good location that I can walk to to everything I need (grocery stores, thrift stores, library, bars, restaurants, etc..)
9. Get books and movies from library
Yes .. Regular oatmeal at Costco - about 80 cents a pound :)
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VictoriaF
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by VictoriaF »

Doroghazi wrote: Fri May 11, 2018 8:16 am My grandmother's favorite saying (in Hungarian) was "If somebody wants to give you something take it, if they want to hit you, run". i know it in 5 languages. You can't be any more frugal than getting something for free. If somebody wants to give you something, take it!!
There is a Hungarian family to whom I am eternally grateful for helping me during a critical period when I was stuck in Vienna alone and pregnant. Nevertheless, I'd like to challenge this particular Hungarian wisdom. "Free" is not just money, it also carries space, time, effort, and opportunity cost.

"Free" is at the root of many irrational decisions. See, for example, Dan Ariely's 10-minute video "The Price of FREE," https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GrHJMfysrlk .

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)
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dm200
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by dm200 »

My parents and grandparents were greatly influenced by the 1930's depression - and some remnants of this continued into the 1950's (my recollections). They made "homemade" soap with lye and grease collected from cooking, never wasting even a small amount of food - and making "sheets" from bleached sacks. Since we and they were farmers, they churned butter, made cottage cheese and used milk in all kinds of food items.
Yellowjacket1
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Money saving ideas?

Post by Yellowjacket1 »

[Thread merged into here, see below. --admin LadyGeek]

There seem to be a lot of younger bogleheads looking for advice on funds, homes, mortgages, etc. Perhaps they would benefit from some of the money saving ideas of us older members?

I will give some of our money saving ideas:

1. Take your lunch to work instead of eating out.

2. Get your coffee at work instead of that $3 latte each morning. Typically, workplace coffee is free or $0.25/cup.

3. Pay off your credit card every month. Don’t pay those high credit card interest rates.

4. Get a freezer and stock it with deals from the grocery store (I.e., buy in bulk)

5. Coupons, coupons, coupons whether for groceries, meals, or other. Don’t be ashamed of using them.

6. Understand fees on your bank account, ATM, credit card, Netflix, etc. and avoid them.

7. Tear up that debit card and use a credit card instead. The debit card has no protection against fraud, the credit card does.

8. Pay off your bills on time and get your credit score to an excellent level. Helps when you need credit for a mortgage, car loan, etc.

9. Only buy dependable cars and drive them at least 12 years before getting a new one. Same goes for cellphones, use your cellphone at least 6 years before getting a new one.

10. At least once per year reassess your internet provider, cellphone provider, insurance, etc. (I.e., anything on a recurring charge) to see if there are cheaper options.

11. Seek out the gas station with the lowest price. Don’t settle for the closest gas station.

12. Find a good tax/financial adviser and listen to what they advise. Then, go research and either validate what they said or if they were wrong, find another advisor.

13. Talk to friends and neighbors Re what they do to save money.

14. When given the opportunity to earn extra income (I.e., overtime at work, small second job), take advantage of those opportunities.

15. Minimize the number of times you go out to a movie. Take advantage of Netflix or Redbox.


So, bogleheads, what ideas can you add?
sport
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by sport »

Shop at Costco. While you are there, look for the unadvertised specials (the ones priced $x.97)
Last edited by sport on Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
bloom2708
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by bloom2708 »

Pretty good list.

#12 seems to not fit in as this place exists so people don't have to pay an advisor. Just 1%. Learning to do it yourself (Bogleheads) is invaluable.

I would add to not under-value their pre-tax 401k/403b in combination with a Roth IRA. Saving in these in your early 20s will go so far later on.
Last edited by bloom2708 on Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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KlangFool
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by KlangFool »

OP,

1) IMHO, the biggest one is "Do not be House Poor". It overrules everything else. And, it affects everything else.

A) It is the biggest expense for almost everyone. If a person overspends on this, it won't matter he/she saves money on anything else. The person still could not save money.

B) The house places a person in a neighborhood where he/she need to overspend to keep up with the Jones.

I buy less house than my income peers. I save 1 year of expense every year. But, I do not save money on everything else. I eat out regularly. I buy a new car and so on.

Meanwhile, my income peers buy a bigger house. They save money on everything else. But, they could not save money and contribute to their retirement accounts.

2) The second biggest one is "do not overspend on college education". This applies to the person's own college education and his/her children college education.

Focus on the big expenses. Do "Pay Yourself First" saving method. Then, you do not need to worry about the details.

KlangFool
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GoldStar
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by GoldStar »

I would negate #12 - learn to do it yourself versus relying on someone else.
I agree with Klangs excellent points. If you do everything on the OP list but buy more house than you really need or can afford nothing else you do will make up the difference.
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willthrill81
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by willthrill81 »

KlangFool wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:25 pm OP,

1) IMHO, the biggest one is "Do not be House Poor". It overrules everything else. And, it affects everything else.
:thumbsup

About two-thirds of Americans' spending is, in order of magnitude, on housing, transportation, and food. If you can cut those significantly, you won't have to bother skipping your coffee or negotiating for lower Internet fees if you don't want to. I'm not saying that we should ignore the relatively small expenses, but it's the big bugaboos that make a big impact.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings
Mom 2 Groms
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by Mom 2 Groms »

I teach Financial Peace University with my DH at our church. This is a list of ideas that we put together to help our classes cut their budgets to achieve their goals.

1. Make your own cleaning supplies
2. Cut your family’s hair
3. Use cloth napkins and kitchen rags
4. Meal plan, and utilize the leftovers
5. Sell Cars with payments, and buy cheap cars with cash
6. Work overtime if available
7. Use rice as a filler in meals
8. Don’t buy water in bottles
9. Look for a better paying job / negotiate a raise
10. Limit gift giving
a. Use the 4 gifts rule – Something you Want, Need, Wear, Read
11. Make your own birthday cakes
12. Shop at Aldi
13. Cut or downgrade cable / phone packages
14. Don’t buy new appliances (includes phones and ipads)
15. Car Pool to work
16. Shop Sales for clothing items
17. Cut your eating out
18. Pick up pizza, instead of delivery (or buy frozen!)
19. Do your own yard work
20. Clean your own house
21. Adjust your thermostat
22. Use cloth diapers
23. Make your own baby food
24. Use it up, Wear it out, Make it do, or do without!
terran
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by terran »

Good list, but I'd change a few of them.
Yellowjacket1 wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:09 pm 11. Seek out the gas station with the lowest price. Don’t settle for the closest gas station.
11. Buy gas at the cheapest station you pass during your regular routine. Going out of your way to buy gas rarely makes sense as you'll burn more gas to get their. Also drive less as never burning the gas in the first place is the best way to save money on gas.
Yellowjacket1 wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:09 pm 12. Find a good tax/financial adviser and listen to what they advise. Then, go research and either validate what they said or if they were wrong, find another advisor.
12. Learn to do taxes and invest on your own. Unless you have extremely complicated finances, taxes aren't that hard. Once you know enough to select a high quality financial advisor you know enough to do it yourself.
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LadyGeek
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by LadyGeek »

Yellowjacket1, Welcome! I moved your thread into the on-going discussion. The combined thread is in the Personal Consumer Issues forum (how you spend your money and your time).
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Edie
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by Edie »

Yellowjacket1 wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:09 pm [Thread merged into here, see below. --admin LadyGeek]

There seem to be a lot of younger bogleheads looking for advice on funds, homes, mortgages, etc. Perhaps they would benefit from some of the money saving ideas of us older members?

I will give some of our money saving ideas:

1. Take your lunch to work instead of eating out.

2. Get your coffee at work instead of that $3 latte each morning. Typically, workplace coffee is free or $0.25/cup.

3. Pay off your credit card every month. Don’t pay those high credit card interest rates.

4. Get a freezer and stock it with deals from the grocery store (I.e., buy in bulk)

5. Coupons, coupons, coupons whether for groceries, meals, or other. Don’t be ashamed of using them.

6. Understand fees on your bank account, ATM, credit card, Netflix, etc. and avoid them.

7. Tear up that debit card and use a credit card instead. The debit card has no protection against fraud, the credit card does.

8. Pay off your bills on time and get your credit score to an excellent level. Helps when you need credit for a mortgage, car loan, etc.

9. Only buy dependable cars and drive them at least 12 years before getting a new one. Same goes for cellphones, use your cellphone at least 6 years before getting a new one.

10. At least once per year reassess your internet provider, cellphone provider, insurance, etc. (I.e., anything on a recurring charge) to see if there are cheaper options.

11. Seek out the gas station with the lowest price. Don’t settle for the closest gas station.

12. Find a good tax/financial adviser and listen to what they advise. Then, go research and either validate what they said or if they were wrong, find another advisor.

13. Talk to friends and neighbors Re what they do to save money.

14. When given the opportunity to earn extra income (I.e., overtime at work, small second job), take advantage of those opportunities.

15. Minimize the number of times you go out to a movie. Take advantage of Netflix or Redbox.


So, bogleheads, what ideas can you add?
I disagree with your #11. I don't know if we're allowed to link to external websites, but you can google xkcd gas prices for why.

The basic gist is if you drive 10 minutes out of your way to save a dollar (5 cents per gallon and a 20 gallon tank), you're working for less than minimum wage. Secondarily, for the average car, depending on the price differential, you will spend more in gas getting to and from the cheaper gas station than you save money wise.

If the cheaper gas station is on your way, great. It's perfectly sensible to fill up at the cheaper gas station then, but driving out of your way there and back isn't saving money. The gasbuddy app is helpful for finding where to buy gas while running errands as long as getting gas isn't the errand :)

Though, with my new to me Leaf, I no longer have a dog in this hunt (maybe half a dog, since my spouse still drives an ICE).

I see I was ninja'd though while typing this up by terran. :oops:
Yellowjacket1
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by Yellowjacket1 »

aerosurfer wrote: Sat May 12, 2018 2:47 am When we know we can use a gift card somewhere... Amazon, eating out, Upcoming Disney trip, we buy gift cards at Kroger. 2-5% cash back on the CC, plus 2-4x fuel points.... We try to plan out fuel purchases to also hit the 35 gallon max between 2 of our cars too when we max out fuel points....

$250 Amazon card x 5% back
Plus 4 times fuel points = $1.00off/gallon
35 gallons plus 3% saving on fuel....

12.50+35+ (3% of the cost of gas, just over $2 usually)= about $50 savings for fuel I needed and whatever I was going to buy
Yes, this is what we do too. Good addition.
Yellowjacket1
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by Yellowjacket1 »

Edie wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:43 pm
Yellowjacket1 wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:09 pm [Thread merged into here, see below. --admin LadyGeek]

There seem to be a lot of younger bogleheads looking for advice on funds, homes, mortgages, etc. Perhaps they would benefit from some of the money saving ideas of us older members?

I will give some of our money saving ideas:

1. Take your lunch to work instead of eating out.

2. Get your coffee at work instead of that $3 latte each morning. Typically, workplace coffee is free or $0.25/cup.

3. Pay off your credit card every month. Don’t pay those high credit card interest rates.

4. Get a freezer and stock it with deals from the grocery store (I.e., buy in bulk)

5. Coupons, coupons, coupons whether for groceries, meals, or other. Don’t be ashamed of using them.

6. Understand fees on your bank account, ATM, credit card, Netflix, etc. and avoid them.

7. Tear up that debit card and use a credit card instead. The debit card has no protection against fraud, the credit card does.

8. Pay off your bills on time and get your credit score to an excellent level. Helps when you need credit for a mortgage, car loan, etc.

9. Only buy dependable cars and drive them at least 12 years before getting a new one. Same goes for cellphones, use your cellphone at least 6 years before getting a new one.

10. At least once per year reassess your internet provider, cellphone provider, insurance, etc. (I.e., anything on a recurring charge) to see if there are cheaper options.

11. Seek out the gas station with the lowest price. Don’t settle for the closest gas station.

12. Find a good tax/financial adviser and listen to what they advise. Then, go research and either validate what they said or if they were wrong, find another advisor.

13. Talk to friends and neighbors Re what they do to save money.

14. When given the opportunity to earn extra income (I.e., overtime at work, small second job), take advantage of those opportunities.

15. Minimize the number of times you go out to a movie. Take advantage of Netflix or Redbox.


So, bogleheads, what ideas can you add?
I disagree with your #11. I don't know if we're allowed to link to external websites, but you can google xkcd gas prices for why.

The basic gist is if you drive 10 minutes out of your way to save a dollar (5 cents per gallon and a 20 gallon tank), you're working for less than minimum wage. Secondarily, for the average car, depending on the price differential, you will spend more in gas getting to and from the cheaper gas station than you save money wise.

If the cheaper gas station is on your way, great. It's perfectly sensible to fill up at the cheaper gas station then, but driving out of your way there and back isn't saving money. The gasbuddy app is helpful for finding where to buy gas while running errands as long as getting gas isn't the errand :)

Though, with my new to me Leaf, I no longer have a dog in this hunt (maybe half a dog, since my spouse still drives an ICE).

I see I was ninja'd though while typing this up by terran. :oops:
I agree you shouldn’t drive 10 minutes out of your way. I was talking about when you have several choices nearby there is usually one that is consistently cheaper. However, it may not be the closest.
Yellowjacket1
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by Yellowjacket1 »

dm200 wrote: Mon May 14, 2018 4:04 pm My parents and grandparents were greatly influenced by the 1930's depression - and some remnants of this continued into the 1950's (my recollections). They made "homemade" soap with lye and grease collected from cooking, never wasting even a small amount of food - and making "sheets" from bleached sacks. Since we and they were farmers, they churned butter, made cottage cheese and used milk in all kinds of food items.
My grandparents were similarly influenced by the Great Depression. My grandmother saved everything: rubber bands, the bags your bread comes in, she used to buy jelly in little jars that doubled as drinking glasses, twist ties, mustard/ketchup packets from restaurants, etc.

Thanks for the memory of my grandmother. :D
RollTide31457
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by RollTide31457 »

Use plastic bags from Walmart, etc. as disposable lunch bags.
Yellowjacket1
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by Yellowjacket1 »

terran wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:37 pm Good list, but I'd change a few of them.
Yellowjacket1 wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:09 pm 11. Seek out the gas station with the lowest price. Don’t settle for the closest gas station.
11. Buy gas at the cheapest station you pass during your regular routine. Going out of your way to buy gas rarely makes sense as you'll burn more gas to get their. Also drive less as never burning the gas in the first place is the best way to save money on gas.
Yellowjacket1 wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:09 pm 12. Find a good tax/financial adviser and listen to what they advise. Then, go research and either validate what they said or if they were wrong, find another advisor.
12. Learn to do taxes and invest on your own. Unless you have extremely complicated finances, taxes aren't that hard. Once you know enough to select a high quality financial advisor you know enough to do it yourself.
I guess we’ve been lucky wrt our tax/financial advisor. We have used him for 38 years and the money he has saved me has been at least 10 times his fees over that period. He was a local tax accounting professor who did taxes as a side business until it became his primary business and eventually a 50+ person firm. The tax nuances he brought to our attention were invaluable. As for financial advice, again he has created financial opportunities for his clients that otherwise we would have never known about nor profited from. So, I guess if you don’t have an adviser up to his standards, it may be better to do it yourself.
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LadyGeek
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by LadyGeek »

Edie wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:43 pm I disagree with your #11. I don't know if we're allowed to link to external websites, but you can google xkcd gas prices for why.
As long as copyright is not violated, that's fine. A simple link does not (normally) violate copyright: xkcd: Working

A direct link to an image with proper attribution is within copyright guidelines (inline link) and is also OK. (Uploading to an image hosting site may not be OK.)

Code: Select all

[img]https://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/working.png[/img]
Produces:
Image
Source: xkcd: Working

Check the site's copyright terms of use before posting. XKCD uses a non-commercial license - free to copy and inline link to images.
Wiki To some, the glass is half full. To others, the glass is half empty. To an engineer, it's twice the size it needs to be.
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Edie
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by Edie »

LadyGeek wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 7:17 pm
Edie wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:43 pm I disagree with your #11. I don't know if we're allowed to link to external websites, but you can google xkcd gas prices for why.
As long as copyright is not violated, that's fine. A simple link does not (normally) violate copyright: xkcd: Working

A direct link to an image with proper attribution is within copyright guidelines (inline link) and is also OK. (Uploading to an image hosting site may not be OK.)

Code: Select all

[img]https://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/working.png[/img]
Produces:
Image
Source: xkcd: Working

Check the site's copyright terms of use before posting. XKCD uses a non-commercial license - free to copy and inline link to images.
Thank you for the information! I will avoid doing the inline links for xkcd images because the creator has alt-text with additional information on all his comics, which doesn't show up that way, but it's good to know I can link directly to the individual page.
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dm200
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by dm200 »

I replaced only the wiper blade on the driver's side today - since the passenger side wiper seems ok. I bought the replacement blade at an autoparts chain - and they installed it for me - no charge.
gofigure
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by gofigure »

Use a TV antenna
wash out and reuse plastic ziploc bags
I sew stuff: gloves, work pants and shirts, socks, fleece pullovers
I repair or have repaired everything eg tools, appliances, furniture etc..(within reason) It's not always frugal though
JD2775
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by JD2775 »

gofigure wrote: Sat May 25, 2019 1:17 pm Use a TV antenna
wash out and reuse plastic ziploc bags
I sew stuff: gloves, work pants and shirts, socks, fleece pullovers
I repair or have repaired everything eg tools, appliances, furniture etc..(within reason) It's not always frugal though
My GF does this with those large ziploc bags, I thought she was crazy. Good to see she isn't the only one...

Other things she does, or I should say "we" do now that we live together, that I never did before...

Use coupons for grocery shopping
Grocery store apps on phones for extra savings
Cook at home way more than I used to
Bring lunch to work 95% of the time (it used to be about 50/50 for me)
Shop at Costco, and use their monthly coupons/deals for things we like

All good things that took some getting used to :)

Don't get me wrong, we still go out for sushi ,thai or pizza occasionally but compared to my bachelor life this is a total change. And guess what? Leaves me more money every month for investing :)
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dm200
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by dm200 »

JD2775 wrote: Sun May 26, 2019 10:47 am
gofigure wrote: Sat May 25, 2019 1:17 pm Use a TV antenna
wash out and reuse plastic ziploc bags
I sew stuff: gloves, work pants and shirts, socks, fleece pullovers
I repair or have repaired everything eg tools, appliances, furniture etc..(within reason) It's not always frugal though
My GF does this with those large ziploc bags, I thought she was crazy. Good to see she isn't the only one...

Other things she does, or I should say "we" do now that we live together, that I never did before...

Use coupons for grocery shopping
Grocery store apps on phones for extra savings

Cook at home way more than I used to
Bring lunch to work 95% of the time (it used to be about 50/50 for me)
Shop at Costco, and use their monthly coupons/deals for things we like

All good things that took some getting used to :)

Don't get me wrong, we still go out for sushi ,thai or pizza occasionally but compared to my bachelor life this is a total change. And guess what? Leaves me more money every month for investing :)
My wife does these things, and sets up online coupon savings for me when I use my grocery card to get the discounts.
Caduceus
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by Caduceus »

KlangFool wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:25 pm OP,

1) IMHO, the biggest one is "Do not be House Poor". It overrules everything else. And, it affects everything else.

A) It is the biggest expense for almost everyone. If a person overspends on this, it won't matter he/she saves money on anything else. The person still could not save money.

B) The house places a person in a neighborhood where he/she need to overspend to keep up with the Jones.

I buy less house than my income peers. I save 1 year of expense every year. But, I do not save money on everything else. I eat out regularly. I buy a new car and so on.

Meanwhile, my income peers buy a bigger house. They save money on everything else. But, they could not save money and contribute to their retirement accounts.

2) The second biggest one is "do not overspend on college education". This applies to the person's own college education and his/her children college education.

Focus on the big expenses. Do "Pay Yourself First" saving method. Then, you do not need to worry about the details.

KlangFool

This is so, so true. It's much easier and makes a larger impact to scale down your largest purchases than to try to save money on thousands of tiny ones. I'm curious how do you know they aren't able to save money and contribute to their retirement accounts though. Do they actually reveal that to you?
Caduceus
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by Caduceus »

The main money-saving idea I have is to treat every non-consumable purchase like a permanent addition to my life and evaluate the quality and cost from there. I tend to research a lot before I buy something and I pay more for quality but I don't buy stuff again for very long periods of time. This is true for clothes, laptops, furniture, etc.

The second is to buy behind the technology curve. You don't have to have the latest gadgets. If everyone is on the Iphone X or whatever it is right now, you can buy a used Iphone 7 and be perfectly happy. I've been looking for a new gaming laptop that I would like to buy end of this year or next, and I can get one with awesome specs for $400 that would have gone for $2000 only 5 years back. If you always buy behind the technology curve, you save thousands and thousands of dollars with no loss to your utility. From a practical perspective, those phones and laptops can do everything you need them to do.
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dm200
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by dm200 »

Caduceus wrote: Sun May 26, 2019 2:44 pm The main money-saving idea I have is to treat every non-consumable purchase like a permanent addition to my life and evaluate the quality and cost from there. I tend to research a lot before I buy something and I pay more for quality but I don't buy stuff again for very long periods of time. This is true for clothes, laptops, furniture, etc.
The second is to buy behind the technology curve. You don't have to have the latest gadgets. If everyone is on the Iphone X or whatever it is right now, you can buy a used Iphone 7 and be perfectly happy. I've been looking for a new gaming laptop that I would like to buy end of this year or next, and I can get one with awesome specs for $400 that would have gone for $2000 only 5 years back. If you always buy behind the technology curve, you save thousands and thousands of dollars with no loss to your utility. From a practical perspective, those phones and laptops can do everything you need them to do.
Yes - our low cost Moto4 smart phones are more than adequate for DW and I. We piggybacked on our son's Sprint plan - along with his wife. Our share (2 smartphones) is only $65 per month - unlimited phone, texts, and data. We also have Hulu :)
devdude
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by devdude »

gofigure wrote: Sat May 25, 2019 1:17 pm wash out and reuse plastic ziploc bags
I do this as well.

I also use plates instead of Saran Wrap to cover bowls of food.
This feels more neurotic than frugal now that I'm sharing :D
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KlangFool
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Re: Money saving ideas?

Post by KlangFool »

Caduceus wrote: Sun May 26, 2019 2:39 pm
KlangFool wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 4:25 pm OP,

1) IMHO, the biggest one is "Do not be House Poor". It overrules everything else. And, it affects everything else.

A) It is the biggest expense for almost everyone. If a person overspends on this, it won't matter he/she saves money on anything else. The person still could not save money.

B) The house places a person in a neighborhood where he/she need to overspend to keep up with the Jones.

I buy less house than my income peers. I save 1 year of expense every year. But, I do not save money on everything else. I eat out regularly. I buy a new car and so on.

Meanwhile, my income peers buy a bigger house. They save money on everything else. But, they could not save money and contribute to their retirement accounts.

2) The second biggest one is "do not overspend on college education". This applies to the person's own college education and his/her children college education.

Focus on the big expenses. Do "Pay Yourself First" saving method. Then, you do not need to worry about the details.

KlangFool

This is so, so true. It's much easier and makes a larger impact to scale down your largest purchases than to try to save money on thousands of tiny ones. I'm curious how do you know they aren't able to save money and contribute to their retirement accounts though. Do they actually reveal that to you?
Yes.

KlangFool
wade22
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by wade22 »

I think often I'm penny-wise and pound-foolish, with pound being my personal happiness
---
Sometimes I cut my own hair, and it often turns out bad. I don't do a buzzcut, so it's not that easy.

Will almost always make my fast food orders revolve around the dollar menu. Taco Bell's is terrible, but I still go there and order from it.

Always buy the disc version of video games so I can resell them on eBay after I'm sick of them. It's unfortunate, digital games are so much more convenient and reselling discs is a bunch of hassle.

Re-balance my copy of the Vanguard Target Fund manually with the ETFs to save a tiny bit on fees. I'd bet my life that the official Target Date outperforms my manual re-balances.

Haven't had a girlfriend in years. It's because I'm frugal and dating is expensive, yeah, totally.
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by gofigure »

wade22 wrote: Sun May 26, 2019 6:37 pm I think often I'm penny-wise and pound-foolish, with pound being my personal happiness
---
Sometimes I cut my own hair, and it often turns out bad. I don't do a buzzcut, so it's not that easy.

Will almost always make my fast food orders revolve around the dollar menu. Taco Bell's is terrible, but I still go there and order from it.

Always buy the disc version of video games so I can resell them on eBay after I'm sick of them. It's unfortunate, digital games are so much more convenient and reselling discs is a bunch of hassle.

Re-balance my copy of the Vanguard Target Fund manually with the ETFs to save a tiny bit on fees. I'd bet my life that the official Target Date outperforms my manual re-balances.

Haven't had a girlfriend in years. It's because I'm frugal and dating is expensive, yeah, totally.
My father used to say the only difference between a good haircut and a bad haircut is about a week.
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by mtmingus »

Bought organic chicken drumsticks from Costco, deboned them myself.
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by shell921 »

yellowjacket - you list is very good. I would add:

* Learn to cook basic simple things - it's a life skill that saves you $$$ - plus it's healthier than lots of restaurant food.
* READ all you can - learn how money works !!! Be curious and open minded.
* Make time to exercise now or be forced to make time to be sick later. Take care of your body. You can not buy another one at any price!!
* Learn to meditate-no downside to meditation-it's beneficial for the body and the mind.
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dm200
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by dm200 »

shell921 wrote: Mon May 27, 2019 8:35 am yellowjacket - you list is very good. I would add:

* Learn to cook basic simple things - it's a life skill that saves you $$$ - plus it's healthier than lots of restaurant food.
* READ all you can - learn how money works !!! Be curious and open minded.
* Make time to exercise now or be forced to make time to be sick later. Take care of your body. You can not buy another one at any price!!
* Learn to meditate-no downside to meditation-it's beneficial for the body and the mind.
:happy
wade22
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by wade22 »

gofigure wrote: Mon May 27, 2019 6:08 am My father used to say the only difference between a good haircut and a bad haircut is about a week.
It depends on the length and whether the bad haircut is yours or one done by a hairdresser, the hairdresser is only going to mess up so bad. You can do some massive damage to your hair and short-term self-esteem when you're working on your own mop.

I keep it about 2 or 2 and a half inches on top, so a misstep could easily make me look terrible for a month. You can kinda "fix" it with a buzzcut, but that's going to set me back about 2 months if I want it back to my goal length. I actually just gone done screwing up another haircut 2 days ago. It's lopsided, I cut one of the sides up about a half inch higher than the other one. I can't make it even because that would give me a mohawk that I don't want. I've decided to stay the course instead of buzzing because it's not that noticeable if you don't look closely. I think I'm gonna take a break on the home haircuts for a bit, my self-esteem is kinda fragile at the moment.
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by Qmann »

1) Buy lowest octane gas available for my Ferrari

(2) Order house vodka at my club instead of Grey Goose

(3) Cut my personal chef back to five days a week

(4) Don't tip bell boy when I stay at the Waldorf-Astoria
Now that’s funny!
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by mediahound »

FWIW, George Clooney cuts his own hair with the Flowbee (I assume when not on a movie set that has a professional stylist):

https://youtu.be/DynqZTldRb4?t=146

If it's good enough for him, it's good enough for me. Only thing is, you can't get one right now, all sold out.
SlowMovingInvestor
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by SlowMovingInvestor »

When replacing batteries on thermostats, other devices etc. that have a low battery indicator, I check with my my multimeter and throw out only the weakest (or just one normally).

I reuse the others. [I sometimes use rechargeable batteries too, but not normally for these items]
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Nicolas
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by Nicolas »

I quit eating meat, it’s too expensive.

I wait until just after another person has showered before I start mine, that way I have instant hot water.
Last edited by Nicolas on Tue Dec 08, 2020 10:47 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by Nicolas »

Yellowjacket1 wrote: Tue Jul 31, 2018 5:36 pm she used to buy jelly in little jars that doubled as drinking glasses
In the seventies you could buy a kit that enabled you to cut the top off of jars to make them into drinking glasses. Nobody recycled back then so otherwise they’d just go into the garbage. My in-laws did this, we never did.
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by azanon »

Not only do I drink box wine, but when it’s almost empty, i tear the box open so that I can squeeze that last glass worth of wine out of the bag. And a 7 digit investment account

Boglehead FTW!
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by willthrill81 »

Nicolas wrote: Tue Dec 08, 2020 10:39 pm I quit eating meat, it’s too expensive.
Someone once told me that if I didn't eat meat that I would live ten more years.

I replied "Why would I want to live ten more years without bacon?" :D
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by wilked »

azanon wrote: Tue Dec 08, 2020 10:54 pm Not only do I drink box wine, but when it’s almost empty, i tear the box open so that I can squeeze that last glass worth of wine out of the bag. And a 7 digit investment account

Boglehead FTW!
I also find that if you fill it with 4 oz water after empty, shake it, you can get a pretty good extra glass of wine for 'free' :sharebeer
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Nicolas
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by Nicolas »

wilked wrote: Tue Dec 08, 2020 11:17 pm I also find that if you fill it with 4 oz water after empty, shake it, you can get a pretty good extra glass of wine for 'free'
We do this with salad dressing and shampoo bottles. When they’re gone we add a little water, shake it, and we have a little more before we toss the bottle.
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by flaccidsteele »

I flew economy once in 2018
The US market always recovers. It’s never different this time. Retired in my 40s. Investing is a simple game of rinse and repeat
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by azanon »

wilked wrote: Tue Dec 08, 2020 11:17 pm
azanon wrote: Tue Dec 08, 2020 10:54 pm Not only do I drink box wine, but when it’s almost empty, i tear the box open so that I can squeeze that last glass worth of wine out of the bag. And a 7 digit investment account

Boglehead FTW!
I also find that if you fill it with 4 oz water after empty, shake it, you can get a pretty good extra glass of wine for 'free' :sharebeer
Lol nice! I should level up my technique!
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by LadyGeek »

Use plastic supermarket shopping bags as home trash can liners. I double-bag the groceries so I'll have a double layer for the liners.
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Re: That Frugal Thing You Do

Post by Sandtrap »

We DIY most everything as we are able to from fixin’ to buildin’ and are frugal with least waste on things.
That allows us to spend reasonably on things more lasting.

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